Monero (launched 2014) is a privacy focused cryptocurrency which is based on Cryptonote technology. Privacy is built in its design by default for all the network participants. The development is currently led by Riccardo Spagni with a few other core protocol developers after splitting from the original Bitmonero project (forked from bytecoin) in 2014.
Monero has unbounded inflation, after emission of 18.132 million monero (May 2022), a constant tail emission of 0.6 XMR every 2 minutes willShow more [+] ck in resulting around 1% inflation per year. A permanent inflation keeps miners incentivized, thereby securing the network.
Monero enables untraceable and unlinkable transactions. It uses Ring signatures to protect sender identity, stealth address to protect recipient identity and Ring CT (Ring confidential transaction) to protect transaction amount. This is vastly different from Bitcoin where all transactions are visible to everyone and a sophisticated blockchain analysis can potentially reveal a user's identity. Monero is currently working on Kouri to integrate I2P (The invisible internet project) to protect users IP address as well.
In April 2018, Monero made an effort (successful so far) to become ASIC resistance, in order to prevent mining centralization. Monero's privacy feature makes a true fungible coin. It also supports the concept of 'view key'. Using a 'view key' a user can share transaction details with a third party or an auditor. No one can spend coins using 'view key'.
Governments are usually not greats fans of the anonymous cryptocurrency concept. Notably, the Japanese Financial Security Agency is already trying to ban such coins, as they worry that they can be used for illegal activities. However, Monero's community is strong and supportive and most probably a real market need for a privacy respecting coin will always be there. (eg. Monero is already a primary payment method for buying branded Tor onion domains).